On the trail of Bengaluru’s food bloggers

Mediterranean cuisine, did you say? Or do you want a quick recipe for a mango dessert this summer? A peek into some of Bengaluru-based food blogs.

Food blogging is growing in India, and a lot of food enthusiasts are sharing their wonderful recipes online. Each of them have their unique stories, experiences, and of course, their food recipes. Here are three food bloggers who live in Bengaluru doing what they love doing, and a peek at their journeys.

Blog beginnings

Archana Doshi, on her food blog , calls herself a “chef, blogger, author, food writer” and more. She is a software engineer by profession but when she became a mother, she had to leave her career behind. At this time she decided to blog about parenting, and a little later, she began blogging about the recipes that she invented in her own kitchen.

Archana’s ‘Pavlova with Strawberry Compote’. Pic: Archana Doshi

“I developed a flair and love for cooking during my childhood when I worked with my mother in the kitchen helping her with various chores,” says Archana. “Over time my traffic kept increasing, the growth provided the drive to cook, write and photograph food,” she says.

Another food lover, Chinmayie Bhat’s cooking days began when she was in college. “When I moved to Bangalore for college into my own little house at the age of 17, I started cooking all three meals a day.”

Though her food was a hit, Chinmayie says she could never remember the exact recipe. “Every time somebody tried something special I had made, they would ask me for the recipe and I would be blank. I never remember my recipes. Cooking to me is very natural and spontaneous,” she says.

After a while she began to post her recipes and photographs on her Facebook page. As time went by, more people began asking her for her recipes. That’s when she decided to start her own blog.

For Swapna Venkatesh who started her own food blog in 2009, food was a major part since she was nine. “We always helped around home, especially whenever there was something different being cooked; I was not interested in the usual dhal and chaaval.”

What’s special?

All these food lovers began with by loving one thing, but now over time, they’ve become masters in their own fields and have unique areas of interest in cooking.

Cooking with local ingredients and what’s available in her kitchen is what Chimayie does. Despite being a full-time mother, Chinmayie’s blog is always flowing with new recipes as the seasons change.

“I am thankful that I have access to gorgeous seasonal fruits and vegetables throughout the year and I am going to make complete use of it. Eating seasonal and local is healthier and more sustainable than eating imported gourmet food from the other parts of the world,” she says.

Chinmayie’s ‘Aloor Dum’. Pic: Chinmayie Bhat

Growing up in the town of Puttur, Chinmayie ate simple seasonal food. For a while she moved away from these traditional foods trying different cuisines and dishes. “But I am back to basics again with a lot of respect and love for eating simple,” she says.

Having stayed in many countries, Archana cooks a variety of dishes of different cuisines. Archana’s recipes are all healthy and the ingredients used are fresh, not packaged or processed. Archana began to make her own baby food for her two sons when they were small. “I used to grind baby cereal at home, make fresh pureed food every day and never bought ready to eat packaged baby food,” she says.

Swapna enjoys cooking Italian and Mediterranean foods the most. She kept a book in which she would record her recipes. Soon she saw others who were blogging about their own food, and she too thought it was time to put her own recipes online. At this time, she had also started becoming interested in photography, so everything fit.

Flavourful journey

Archana started her food blog in 2007, and today, has over a million visitors on her blog and 7500 fans on Facebook. Archana also conducts cooking classes in the city. Details are available on her site.

Chinmayie’s posts of various foods and drinks all have a story to tell, which makes reading them interesting. She shares her thoughts, how she came about making the dish, and what the process was like.

“I’m pretty happy as I get about 2000-3000 views per month,” Swapna says. Though she could increase the number of views on her site, Swapna prefers to keep her site ad-free.

Managing blogs and balancing their other interests is a task for these food bloggers, but yet, they have found what they’re passionate about, cooking and food. What more, they’re enjoying it, and thousands are benefitting from it!

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